Dr. Konstantin Frank Rkatsiteli Finger Lakes 2002
"RKATSITELI is a weird word for a wonderful wine which is winning Gold medals and other kudos all over the world. Specifically, Dr. Frank’s 2002 Rkatsiteli (er-cots-i-TELL-ee) has been in the “Sweepstakes” rounds at several California-based international competitions in the past month, often coming close to winning “Best White Wine” among thousands. In Wednesday’s New York Times, Frank Prial praised the golden color, spicy fruit and lively acidity of Dr. Frank’s Rkats from 1985-that’s 18 years old!-and said “it was more fun to drink than many an expensive chardonnay that would be hard put to last half as long.” Though hardly known in this country, Rkatsiteli is the world’s second most widely planted grape (in countries of the former Soviet Union) and, according to some, was the vine that Noah planted after the flood. It was planted in the Finger Lakes by the late Dr. Konstantin Frank, and to my knowledge that winery is still the only one in the U.S. which produces Rkats. By my sensory apparatus, it is a great blend of the best characteristics of chardonnay, gewürztraminer and riesling. When I am (often) asked the impolitic question of what is my favorite type of wine, Rkats is among the top three varietals. It’s a shame it’s so rare." Jim Trezise, The Wine Press, Saturday, 6/7/03.
Dr. Konstantin Frank ignited the “Vinifera Revolution” a movement that forever changed the course of wine growing in the Finger Lakes and the United States. Dr. Frank’s vision, knowledge and determination are credited with elevating the New York wine industry from a state of happy mediocrity to a level that today commands world attention.